Cheap flights to Valencia
One of the most beautiful cities in the whole of Spain; Valencia is also its most up-and-coming with an energy that sets it apart and a host of colourful festivals that will impress even the most experienced of travellers. While it might not be as famous as its sister cities of Madrid and Barcelona, Spain’s third-largest city Valencia more than holds its own when it comes to entertaining the many tourists that pass through its walls year on year. Best known for being the home of Spain’s most famous dish, Paella Valenciana, as well as the legendary El Cid, and the world famous Holy Grail – don’t question its authenticity, it is the real thing, honestly!
It’s also home to some of Spain’s most unique architecture with an old quarter complete with narrow streets and gothic buildings, a medieval fortification or two, museums, cathedrals, bars, cafes – we could go on. Valencia also has an ultra-modern side that boasts Spain’s second most visited tourist attraction; and no it’s not a mosque, or a cathedral, or even a palace. It is, however, the collection of some of Europe’s most mind-blowing architecture that makes up the City of Arts and Sciences – think organic-looking white spaceships and you’re on the right track. This ‘city’ not only houses a multi-functional arts and music centre, an interactive science museum, a planetarium and an IMAX theatre, but also Europe’s largest aquarium; truly a first of its kind in Europe and something that the locals are very proud of.
Remember the sun cream when you head out to one of the great city beaches such as the less touristy Patacona. The sun is almost guaranteed to shine and you're not going to be in any rush to leave once you get settled on a lounger, cold drink in hand. visitvalencia.com
Valencia is very flat, making it a perfect place to sightsee using a bicycle. While private rental shops are dotted around, the local government has its own official system which is a great and inexpensive way to pick up and drop off bikes at convenient locations across the city. valenbisi.com
A sightseeing bus trip is a great way to take in the best of the city quickly and easily. Two routes are available, one predominantly exploring the port area and the other taking in the major historical sites. €16/€18 for 24/48 hours of hopping on and off. valenciabusturistic.com
If you are in town on 6 January, don't miss the Three Kings Parade. Traditionally the day that Spanish children receive their Christmas gifts, the handsomely dressed kings travel on their chariots around the town throwing out sweets and waving to the cheering crowds.
The City of Arts and Sciences is home to the incredible, futuristic buildings designed by renowned Valencian architect Santiago Calatrava. While some controversy surrounds their construction, they undoubtedly provide some incredible photo opportunities, especially on a clear day when the sky is blue. cac.es
Get away from the sweltering heat by taking a refreshing afternoon siesta. The tradition is very much respected here, and pretty much all shops and businesses close from 1.30pm till 4.30pm, including museums. If you're hungry during the siesta hours, however, you'll usually be able to find a tapas bar open and catering to the peckish passer-by.
Valencia Community has its fair share of wine producers in the Utiel/Requena area. If that's of interest, try the award-winning Vicente Gandia winery. When the tour of the production area is complete and the tasting starts, it's hard not to become an enthusiastic wine connoisseur. vicentegandia.es/en
A day trip to Cullera, just a 30-minute drive down the coast, makes for a lovely day out. A tourist-friendly seaside town, you'll know you've arrived when you see the massive Hollywood-style "Cullera" written on the hillside high above.